tv [untitled] April 5, 2011 1:30am-2:00am PDT
-- we need at least one place, or even one in every district, where teenagers and young adults can be themselves and grow and socialize in a safe haven that is conducive to experiencing life as it should be without thinking about what color you are wearing or thinking about who might join me if i am on this bus. there are a lot of issues going on in our city that really make our teenagers and young adults -- is almost like a struggle. i definitely see that in the tenderloin. i really feel it there is anything our city can do for our young adults to provide them with safety -- vice chair joseph: maybe you can provide them a venue to have a dance and that would be the right thing. >> we would need police protection and security protect of thing. thank you for your questions.
commissioner zukerman: i would like to add that the amount of support that we have had from the community is great. that is the bread-and-butter of the youth commission. community concern -- that makes us feel wonderful. >> good evening, commissioners. thank you very much for having us all this evening. my name is liam shye. i am a 10-year deejay and former u.s. commissioner. we formed a "save the rave" in response to a proposed california law, but also in part due to what has been happening for years in san francisco. when i was a youth commissioner in 2003, we passed a resolution
declaring a health crisis due to the lack of safe recreation opportunities for youth. that has only gotten worse as numerous events have been denied permits or lost traditional venues. reform so we could organize and show that our community deserves to have these events protected and that they are more than just parties. they are major contributors to the local economy and our vital cultural assets that increase health and happiness for citizens to pay government taxes. we are gathered to night to share our stories of electronic dance music events and the positive impact they have had on our lives. our right to dance, assemble, and freedom of expression is protected by the constitution. unless we continue to make our voices heard, it is easy for those rights to get swept under the rug. i would like to commend supervisor weiner who has
introduced a resolution recognizing our social, economic, and public-health value. this is a huge step in ensuring the city will be working with us. we have about to celebrate. thank you for that. on that note, no the community is paying attention every step of the way. we expect accountability, fairness, and harm reduction, instead of eliminating the events we care so deeply about. i would like to thank the commissions for hosting this hearing tonight. thank you. commissioner zukerman: i am going to call five people at a time. if you can line up, that would be great. our left, your right. first person, jordan spalding. valery klinker.
nihau judner. justin duke. jerry peddlestein. thank you. >> thank you, members of the entertainment and new commissions. i am a record level promoter -- label promoter. many of you here today probably speak multiple languages. many of you probably own an ipod or m p three device. -- or mp3 device. i would probably be lost listening to yours, whereas mine you would probably hear a different emotion, a different feeling that comes from the
sound of every one of these electronic dance music deejays. in a city as the purse as san francisco, it almost universal sounds created from this -- as diverse as san francisco, almost universal sound created from this music unite the city as a whole. i feel without this music you will have some very confused and disorganized use. -- youth. i am sure you have said actions -- heard actions speak louder than words. i hope the actions of everybody who came here to speak on behalf "save the rave" -- the sounds we love so much, together with the actions, and hopefully replace the words that i am trying to express in this speech. thank you very much. >> thank you.
>> how are you doing today? my name is valerie. i do not have a special speech. i just want to say that i am part upon -- part of "save the rave." it has to happen. it is not just for a dance to hang out. it is a cultural event, something that makes us physically one. it is not just some place we go and take drugs and find different things we want to get into in a negative way. we want to experience something new and have light shining on us. it is a diverse community. it is a place that is just fun. it is like a party, but it is more than that. i feel like everyone is trying to do what people in jail do and say "i am innocent." that is what i feel like people
are doing who take the drugs and odd, or whatever. a lot of people are passionate about this. hopefully i represent them. i am 20, but i represent the young people around my community. that is what i believe. goodbye. >> nanhau shuga? >> i am in a community member of san francisco. i migrated from new york city. i am also known as the jury makes king -- as dj remix king. i am part of organized chaos, a group organizing safe rave events.
i would like to touch upon the fact that in perspective of what everyone's decisions may be, kids will always find a way to party. any particular given our, given this fact, i feel it is the responsibility of the adult community to provide an official with for the youth to be able to have these raves and be able to party. the thing that my group as well as organized chaos promotes is a strong method or paradigm providing raves in a safe manner. we have 30 p.m. team members at hand at all or events. -- 30 emt members at hand at all our events. come a safety perspective, we are quick to respond. we insure the health and safety of our youth.
we do not officiate these raids -- we do officiate these raves. if we do not do this in an official manner, they will lose the safety aspects of the party. thank you. commissioner zukerman: next speaker. >> how are you doing? thanks a lot. dance music in this culture has been one of the most impeccable things in my life. whether it is raising money for causes, helping someone in need, or planning a moving piece of music. as a culture promoting peace, love, and celebration of life through dance, please do not take this away from young kids. do not take away an aspect that is in eight in each of us as humans -- is innate in each of
us as humans. continue to work with the dance music community to provide a safe and positive environment as much as possible. with the rave ban, you may or may not see a decrease in the negative aspects that started the ban. you will definitely see a decrease in the positive aspects. this music has changed my life. i am older now. i can only hope to share the joy and love i have experienced to the wonderful music and culture. thank you. commissioner zukerman: i would like to call up joseph, red, travis. >> good evening, commissioners. i would like to take a moment to thank you for calling this -- calling this hearing today. i will draw a parallel to the
state upon -- in europe, where it is considered a public health issue rather than a law enforcement issue. we are on the brink of making the decision of making a transition from an enforcement perspective to a public health perspective. my key point tonight really is focusing on the emphasis that we should be creating safe alternatives for the youth to gather rather than driving it into the underground, where likely it will not be as safe and the youth will not be able to have an opportunity to express themselves in whatever manner they would like to that has the appropriate resources, with security, medical, and building codes that allow them to gather and celebrate in a safe manner. i am available for questions, should the commission have any.
thank you. vice chair joseph: how do they do it in europe? what does harm reduction look like? >> there is a strong public- private partnership. the government does not look at it from a perspective of coming at it from arrests or making permiting events to the public where it is difficult for them to financially -- the government supports them with security and medical resources so the event can happen in a safe manner. this is done from the nightclub level to the festival level. thank you very much. commissioner lacroix: next up is travis, andre, jessia adams, michael miller, frank walburg.
president newlin: come right up when you are ready. >> good evening, commissioners. i am health and safety officer of "save the rave." special events will no longer be tolerated in this city, said the mayor of boston. i request support for prohibiting any such event at any state-of building, a massachusetts state senator. does this sound familiar? the year was 1958. they were talking about rock- and-roll concerts. unlike other youth events, raves typically do not involve
assault. it discourages aggressiveness. they are safer places for young people, especially women, than conventional bars and clubs. there is heat, humidity, and loud music. there are organizers, ravers, and promoters. there is a police guide that has research-funded police practices in the u.s., u.k., canada, the netherlands, and other countries. the justice department recommends ventilation, air conditioning, drinking water, and education about the risks of drug use and over extension to ensure a safe event for you. we are nonprofit. we have been looking for been used to hold fund-raising youth
dances in san francisco for youth under 18. we have not meant able to find them so far. please help us. we believe that cooperation and education are key. we are looking forward to working with venues, promoters, and the city to establish education and safety at all types of mass events. thank you. >> you said you have tried to find venues and have failed to find any. what efforts have you made and what doors have been closed? >> the key criteria for finding the news has been to find outside venues since we do not want to charge teams outrageous amounts over $10 on weekends. we want venues that would be safe. that means there would be in close proximity to major streets and public press
protection -- public transportation, where we feel kids could come and leave without fear. we have tried most clubs in san francisco. very few want to do events for youth under 18. the few that do are prohibitively expensive. we have looked at parks and recreation facilities, and there is really nothing they have been able to find that is available. we looked at nontraditional venues such as churches. they tend to be really, really small. we have failed so far. >> given your experience and efforts, what is your best
suggestion? >> i believe the city has a number of properties which can hold the events, which can be safe. i think it would be beneficial for the city to the least those to the youth. it is key to educate the youth on the dangers of drugs and other unsafe behavior. such education would be best done at the events. then by the time they turn 18 they know what to expect. banning events, like previously expressed, with just cause them to move underground. kids are going to party, no matter what we do. if they do not have basic place to do so, the results can be unpredictable. president newlin: next speaker,
come right up if your name has been called. >> i am gery edelstein. i am a research fellow at california at space science lab. i am here with my professional peers to demonstrate the broad diversity of citizens who support electronic dance music events. state-permitted public musical events are a substantial and historic part of our identity as sentences since. it attracts tourists from all over the country, benefiting local businesses, and enhances the desirability of the bay area as a place to live and work. i have personally met with scores of folks at these events who came to town specifically to have fun at these events. the travel a long way. as a recruiter of professionals and post secondary students, i can attest personally to the allure of this diversity in
attracting those kind of people to our area. access to civic venues is a positive to the conduct of such events. application and enforcement of sensible submit regulations on capacity, access, sanitation, health, and conduct are an obvious benefit to the community and the city. my peers and i find the infectious excitement and positive behavior at electronic music events provides inspiration for us to maintain our youthful figure in body and spirit, and as an inspiration to the youth of positive community experiences. commissioner lacroix: thank you. next speaker, please. >> good evening. thank you for having us tonight. my name is michael miller. i have been throwing events for about five years.
i started organized chaos, which was founded in safety and security for venues. i work with so many teenagers. it is one of those things where they need safety. they need locations where you can do this safely, where you can support it so it does not go more to the underground, which will in the long run penalize and how they are and make it so there are more injuries and were held concerns. i have done harm reduction stuff. i am prior military. i never expected to be where i am now. i have gotten many teenagers out there who called and asked advice on how to do it safely. i really enjoyed it. a lot of strength comes from
everyone coming together with a common goal. i appreciate your support. thank you. commissioner zukerman: i would like to call-up benn schell, joseph, kendra, alexander, and robin ma. >> thank you for having us. i am one of those organized teenagers that was mentioned earlier. i ran away from home. i had nowhere to go. i was on the verge of suicide. my parents were abusive. there were drugs. i found my way to my very first grave. i found a new kind of family. i was accepted. the music was beautiful. people loved me and accepted the for the way i was. i found out it was more than a giant party.
it was a place where we could celebrate our lives. i really believe that this scene has saved my life. 18 years later, i am still very much a part of the scene. i have learned the news here that i carry throughout my daily life. really, i -- excuse. south acceptance, love, unconditional acceptance, unconditional love. i transfer these bodies to my students. i am an elementary school teacher. i graduate from college and got my master's degree. i got my teaching credential. in my heart, i knew i was finally home. i still know that. if you take that away from us, things will change. we are good people doing good things in the world. we are taxpaying citizens.
we transfer these bayous to our local and global communities. we do not go to these events so that we can hurt each other or ourselves. we appreciate the opportunity to keep doing that. >> i want to speak about a friend i met through electronic dance music. josh has been listening to the electronic music for 15 years. he started attending events when he was a teacher and has loved the aspect of many people dancing in unison. he told me that if you feel the music in your heart you all can group together, creating one big organism. two years ago, he was involved
in a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the chest down. today, he has an outstanding at two toward life and has still devoted his life to music. he is still asked by nurses in the hospital to turn of the music. he still attends events with family and friends and hired escorts. i realised that hope is something that we ourselves can choose to believe or give up. when you give up hope, you are looking down the people looking up to you. you're throwing away your purpose in life. rather than all of us giving up hope because of what has happened in the past, let us work together to expose the beautiful genre of electronic
dance music. >> good evening. i am from students for sensible drug policy from the state university. the electronic dance music scene has experienced bad press as light. although there has been much controversy, with overdoses and deaths, that will not be resolved by shutting down these venues. banning these events will drive them underground and unregulated venue, which will cause more death amongst our generation. i have been to these events since 2003. what we need is harm reduction. we need to require promoters to provide air conditioned and news and free water to prevent heat stroke overdoses. at times, they charge $5 a water bottle. i do not endorse the use of
illicit mind-altering substances. however, we cannot turn away from these issues and ignore them. i am concerned for my generation. i am concerned for the safety of the generation to come. it is impossible to completely stop the legitimate drug use. but we can decrease the amount and harm done through these events which do not practice harm reduction measures. we need to require air conditioning and free water at these venues. beening electronic dance music events will be counterproductive. let us not move backwards through policies. we need to provide it harm reduction information to all attendees. i am from students for sensible drug policy. it is not successful to shut down these events. i wish you would reconsider the initiative to ban these events in san francisco and california.
thank you. >> i would like to remark that free water must be provided, free, accessible water. that is something we would definitely work toward in the statute. thank you. >> hello, president newlin and members of the commission. i am a native and resident of napa valley. i journeyed here tonight because i wanted to speak and have my voice heard. i actually attended lots of events in the city. i buy tickets for the ballet and symphony every year, and i go to a lot of electronic dance events. i probably have to say that i have met more giving and open people at those events than the others. the people at these events actually come up to you and talk to you. i have got friends who cover the
range. that is what is great. i have friends now that are teenagers, as well as funds that go to these events that are in their 60s. i have met them all during these events. i think it would be a shame. really what we are talking about is a community. this is the idea of community. there are so many other events that are demographically narrow. these are actually events where we bring the whole community together and we actually can pass on to the younger generation, and the older generation gets to interact with that younger generation. it would be a real shame to try to make these not allowed any more, to not bring these people together. all it needs is a little more safe restraint, or things that make it reasonable for all these people to come together. it keeps me driving in all the way from halfpipe -- from napa
to be with all these people. when i grew up as a native, we did not have much of that. we suffer from that loss and i saw people go the wrong way because they did not have places to get together in a safe environment. it would be a shame to lose that. thank you. commissioner lacroix: next up is peter frazier, kevin collins, nickel, -- nicole, matt, and nathaniel fowler. >> i am a resident of the north panhandle neighborhood of san francisco. i am in district 5. i live for many years in new york, montreal, toronto, 10 years in europe. i am